Saturday, March 28, 2009

Fanta Orange ah la Russia

I kind of dig that orange slice graphic.

Fanta Orange, Russian

So I fall all over myself singing the praises of sugary soft drinks, as opposed to their corn based cousins. Sugar can do no wrong in my book. Well, this crazy Eastern European Fanta I bought falls flat. Not in a non-carbonated way, but in a flavor way.

I've never been a big Fanta fan, but sometimes when you travel it's all you can get. I've drank enough of the stuff that it doesn't bother me, and I'll even sometimes pick it up on a whim when given other choices. It definitely has a European reputation, and I have a vague memory of some guys I used to play the Palladium RPG with calling me "Eurotrash" when I brought a bottle to their game. I'm not sure if these guys had ever left New York City much less gone to Europe, so that reinforces its Back East reputation.

I'm so unenthused about Fanta that I changed my plans for this review minutes after buying this ginormous bottle of the crap. My plan had been to buy an American bottled Fanta as well, and then taste test the two back to back. Common sense stepped in and declared that this was going to be way too much Fanta, and I shouldn't think about that sort of crap.

So, one huge bottle of Eastern European Fanta. That's what I have. The little sticker says it was imported by "Trilini intarnational Imports..." That's all I can read of their name, as the sticker is rubbed away at that point. Or burned away, or something. Their phone number is (718)437-2700, I'm going to call them and ask what other wonders they import. The best thing about this little white sticker is that it reads "Drink with taste of an orange".

That is pretty much what Fanta is, I cannot deny it. There is definitely a taste of an orange in there. The oddness about this stuff, though, is that it tastes like corn syrup. The sweet is the burned corn husk sweet of Coca Cola. So, Russian Fanta loses big time. How can you screw that up?

Further investigation of the little white sticker tells me that there are a whopping 31 calories per serving, with 20 servings living inside this big old bottle. Europeans certainly are classy folks if they drink their Fanta a third of a cup at a time. This is a soda, not a hard liquor. Wait, Russians don't drink hard liquor in small doses, clearly they flipped their drinking volumes around.

But that little white sticker is where the sanity ends. Everything below is in cartoon Cyrillic, except the actual "Fanta" itself. And the numbers. And the Pepsi Cola logo. Blah blah blah.

So, to wind up: Eastern European Fanta is not much better than US Fanta. And US Fanta is pretty unremarkable, so the idea is not to bother with either. The follow-up thought is to wonder why someone would bother importing this stuff if it's so similar to what we already have?

Edit: Oh neat, there's a little raised star inside the cap. It probably means I just won a zillion rubles.

The bottle text comes out looking like a lonely chat log.


  1. It has been said that:

    The composition of Fanta, for the same flavor, varies from country to country. For example, the European Fanta Orange has orange juice (in varying percentages), whereas the US formulation does not [6]. The Australian version is 5% fruit juice, and South American formulations also have orange juice, especially in Brazil, where Fanta is 10% orange juice. These differences mean the taste of Fanta differs greatly from country to country, more so than regular Coca Cola, and may in part explain why the drink's popularity varies so much between different countries. Difference in coloring can be observed internationally, for example European Fanta Orange is a light orange almost yellow, in Latin and North American markets, deep orange coloring is used.
    Spanish Fanta Orange formulation: [7]
    Carbonated water, sugar, 8% orange juice from concentrate, acidity regulator E-330 (citric acid), aromas, preserver E-211 (sodium benzoate), stabilizers E-414 (gum arabic), E-412 (guar gum), E-445, antioxidant E-300 (ascorbic acid), food coloring E-160a (Carotene) and gelatine (made from fish).
    United States Fanta Orange formulation:
    Carbonated water, high fructose corn syrup, citric acid, sodium benzoate, modified food starch, natural and artificial flavors, sucrose acetate isobutyrate, sodium polyphosphates, coconut oil, yellow 6, brominated vegetable oil, red 40, dioctyl sodium sulfosuccinate.
    British Fanta Orange formulation: [8]
    Carbonated water, sugar (from beet and/or cane), orange fruit from concentrate (5%), citric acid, vegetable extracts (carrot, pumpkin), preservative (potassium sorbate), natural flavourings, sweeteners (sodium saccharin, aspartame), acidity regulator (sodium citrate)

    Italian Fanta Orange formulation: [9]
    Water, 12% orange juice, sugar, carbon dioxide, citric acid, flavorings, preservative (potassium sorbate), stabilizer (gum arabic), antioxidant (ascorbic acid)
    The combination of sodium benzoate and ascorbic acid (vitamin C) in some soft drinks may potentially lead to the formation of benzene. Benzene is a known carcinogen. However, Fanta has not been shown to contain benzene above the limits set by the United States Environmental Protection Agency‎ for drinking water. [10]

    At least acc. to wiki:

  2. Ach! You're contaminating my pure and unadulterated lack of knowledge about soft drinks!

  3. I just reread this post and think it's pretty awful.

  4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  5. Lol, why "Pepsi Cola logo" when it's sold by Coca-Cola?

    1. I have no idea. Squinting at the blurry picture, I cannot see a Coca-Cola OR Pepsi logo.